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Lake Champlain Information
About Lake Champlain
Lake Champlain is a lake located between Plattsburgh, New York, Burlington, Vermont, and Quebec, Canada. Named for the French explore Samuel de Champlain, it was originally inhabited by native Americans and later French settlers, the lake served as a passage for merchants and other travelers in the colonial period. Situated in the UNESCO World Heritage Site the Champlain-Adirondack Biosphere Reserve, it played host to numerous battles during the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. The nearby Fort Ticonderoga was involved in two key revolutionary battles, and the Battle of Lake Champlain between the British and Americans in 1814 was a decisive victory for the Americans.
Things to Do in Lake Champlain
Nature and outdoor activities are a central draw for most visitors to Lake Champlain. The Burlington Bike Path in Waterfront Park ends near the ECHO, Leahy Center for Lake Champlain and is a short way from Perkins Pier. Ausable Chasm in Keeseville are great biking and hiking for the whole family. Shelburne Farms and Shelburne Vineyard both delicately combine food and education. Brewery and wine tours are abundant. The Shelburne Museum extends over large swaths of land and delves into the history of the area, with blacksmith shops, general stores, a steam ferry, and other historical recreations. Church Street Marketplace and the Burlington Farmer’s Market are excellent to peruse and get a taste of the city. Lighthouses are at various points around the lake and are available for viewing. For those with a taste for off-the-beaten path sights, the World’s Tallest Filing Cabinet is around for a visit after you’re done getting know the legend of Champ, the rumored Lake Champlain monster.
Day Trips from Lake Champlain
Lake Champlain’s proximity to many historical sites makes it a lovely place to vacation. At the southern end of the lake, tours and day trips are available to Forts Ticonderoga and St. Frederic. Whitehall is a short jaunt from Albany, New York, and Saratoga, and Montreal isn’t far from the northern tip of the lake in Quebec. It is also possible to visit many of the islands in the lake. The three main islands include South Hero Island, North Hero Island, and Isle La Motte. Isle La Motte features St. Anne’s Shrine and Chazy Reef.
Lake Champlain Accommodations
Lodging around Lake Champlain can be found in any of the major cities. Popular hotels include Hotel Vermont, Hampton Inn & Suites Plattsburgh, Microtel Inn and Suites by Wyndam Plattsburgh, and Best Western Plus the Inn at Smithfield. Vacation rentals through Tripping are available. Additionally, Island View Cottage is a highly rated vacation rental. Bed and breakfast establishments are a booming industry here, and some favorites include Made Inn Vermont, Heart of the Village Inn, and The Willard Street Inn.
Transportation in Lake Champlain
Lake Champlain is accessible by car, and Vermont and New York are connected by a road that extends over the lake. Ferries are common modes of transportation as well, as the lake was use for water passage to the Erie Canal and Champlain Canal. Most ferries are operated by the Lake Champlain Transportation Company. The Fort Ticonderoga Ferry is an additional option. Trains from Swanton, Vermont end at the East Alburg station. Historical Trolley Tours in Burlington, VT is a good way to get to know the city.